Having signed young playmakers in the form of Eden Hazard and Marko Marin, Roberto Di Matteo still has to decide on the most important signing of the summer for Chelsea i.e. to find a striker. Although one may argue that Chelsea will work fine with the likes of Torres, Sturridge and Lukaku, still for now, none seems capable of replacing Drogba any sooner. As the competition in the league gets tougher, here is why the blues must sign a striker.
Fernando Torres had a bright season as far as the trophies are concerned, but as an individual he had a season to forget. For Atletico Madrid and Liverpool, Torres was the star man but for Chelsea, he always remained second choice behind the fantastic Didier Drogba. Now that the Ivorian is gone, Torres might get his chance.
Just like Carroll at Liverpool, Torres has not been able to settle well in Chelsea’s style of play. Not one but three managers i.e. Ancelotti, Villas-boas and Di Matteo failed in revitalizing him. Moreover adding a new striker may not help Torres in regaining his form back as he will again have fears of losing his starting place for under-performing as Di Matteo usually plays with a lone striker up front. For now he is the senior striker but Chelsea just cannot rely that heavily on the Spaniard keeping in mind his torrid record for them.
The 22 year old Sturridge was the top scorer in the league for Chelsea alongside Frank Lampard with 11 goals. The former Manchester City boy is an exciting talent but not an out and out striker. He has been used as a winger as well as a striker mainly under Villas-boas. Di Matteo did not prefer him much and he only scored 2 league goals under him. With the inclusion of Eden Hazard who will be playing at Number 10 position to assist the striker or as a winger, one can expect Sturridge to get less game time specifically as a striker. Hence he might not be looked upon as a major goal scorer for the side by his manager.
Lukaku was considered to be next “Drogba” for the blues and his transfer fee matched that description by all means. However after spending 15 odd million to sign the young striker from Anderlecht, he was not given enough chances to prove himself. Even after all the hype, Lukaku only featured in just 8 league games for Chelsea and never scored.
From Mourinho to Di Matteo, the managers had one favorite striker, that has always been Didier Drogba and rightly so. Whether or not Di Matteo thinks Lukaku can take his place having strong attributes, only time will tell. For now he is no more than a third choice striker for Chelsea and seems likely to warm the bench next season or to be loaned out.
Chelsea have various quality players that can provide the firepower to score goals, however if they really want to compete for trophies next season, signing a top quality goal scorer is significant. It is fair to say that Drogba played a pivotal role in winning the FA Cup and Champions League for Chelsea and without him it would not have been possible. Abramovich, having won Europe’s biggest prize, must now splash the cash to bring a replacement and sign a prolific goal scorer for Chelsea and he certainly is capable of doing that.